Purgatory Resort plans to beef up its summer activities, open new ski terrain, upgrade a chairlift and improve snowmaking operations as part of its capital-improvement projects for the 2017-18 season.
It is part of $15 million in upgrades planned this season to a collective of resorts in the Southwest, which include Purgatory; Arizona Snowbowl in Flagstaff, Arizona; Sipapu Ski and Summer Resort near Taos, New Mexico; Pajarito Mountain Ski Area in Los Alamos, New Mexico; Hesperus Ski Area, west of Durango; and Purgatory Snowcat Adventures.
At Purgatory, two activities will be added this summer at the Columbine beginner area:
Summer tubing, which allows participants to slide on tubes down a 300-foot-long synthetic track.A 50-foot by 50-foot airbag to jump onto from a platform with varying heights.Purgatory also plans to build a mountain coaster, which is similar to a roller coaster, but riders have individual carts that travel up the mountain and riders can control their speed on the way down. It will be north of Twilight Lift 4, the two-seater that is also used for the alpine slide. It will operate during the winter and summer seasons. The coaster will be 4,000 feet long with a total decent of 300 feet.
For winter-sport enthusiasts, Purgatory plans to expand its terrain with new intermediate and expert trails on the front and back sides of the mountain within existing boundaries. The new terrain will include gladed tree skiing.
The resort also plans to install a mid-way loading zone on Lift 6, a triple-seat chairlift next to Lift 1 that used to be the main lift up the front side. The mid-way loading zone will give ski teams and terrain park users easier access to terrain they frequently use.
Finally, improvements will be made to the snowmaking infrastructure, including additional pumping capacity and other upgrades to snow guns, which will improve the resort’s ability to open early in the season.
Other improvements to amenities in the Durango area include:
Additional lights at Hesperus Ski Area, which will increase the amount of terrain for night skiing 14 miles west of Durango. The mountain also will reopen the rope tow and install a new yurt, which will provide more indoor space for guests. The rental shop will be expanded and reconfigured for a more customer-friendly experience, and the ski and snowboard rental equipment will be upgraded.Improved snowcat cabins and a portable shelter for breaks and lunch for Purgatory Snowcat Adventures, which accesses 35,000 acres around Purgatory Resort.[email protected]